If you are a property owner then you need to think about designing a storm shelter for your property. It is important to design your storm shelter(s) to fit the use needs of your property. For example, homeowners will need to design shelters that make sense for their family’s use, landlords will need to make accommodations for all of their tenants and business owners will need to plan for the well being of both their employees and their customers. Since each property supports a different group of people, it is useful for each property owner to design a shelter that reflects their needs.
The first thing that you need to plan for is the size of your storm shelter. The size of the storm shelter needs to reflect how many people you will be sheltering, how much supplies you will be storing and for how long the shelter will be used during an average disaster. The longer the recovery period or rescue period after a disaster the larger the shelter needs to be, and the more people that the shelter needs to support the larger it needs to be. However, there are limitations that you will need to work within. Your property is not infinitely large, so you will need to work around the space that you have available.
Type of Storm Shelter
The next characteristic that you need to plan for is the type of shelter you want to build. There are three main types: above ground structures, retrofitted interior safe rooms and underground storm shelters.
Mechanics of the Storm Shelter
Next you need to figure out what life supporting mechanical systems you need to design into your storm shelter. After a disaster strikes you are likely to be off the grid for days or even weeks. Having a storm shelter that has its own sewer, water and power system can be very helpful in making your life more comfortable as you wait for the recovery process to return things to normal. Fortunately adding these things to a storm shelter design is not difficult to do and many systems are modular so they can be purchased and installed easily.
Once you have the essential components of your storm shelter planned out you will be ready to focus on the creature comforts that you want to add. In its most basic form a storm shelter will look a lot like an old bomb shelter with cots, cement floors and walls and possibly a light bulb for light. If you are working on a tight budget this may suffice. However, you do have the option of pimping out your storm shelter to make it a bit more comfortable. There are kitchen units that you can add to make food preparation easier to do, there are garage options that you can add so you can drive your vehicles into one end of your storm shelter when a tornado or hurricane approaches. Finally there are decorative accents that you can add including paneling or drywall for the walls, upgraded flooring and wiring for communications and entertainment.